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ASABA/Nigeria: The National Bureau of Statistics has announced plans to carry out a National Agricultural Sample Census, thirty years after the exercise was last conducted in the country.

This was made known at a Stakeholders Sensitization Workshop in Asaba, Delta State, to prepare NBS officials in the 17 southern states for the exercise.

NBS plans to utilize the latest tools in the agro sample census including satellite mapping technology.

The Chairman Governing Board of NBS Dr. Kabiru Nakaura, said the National Agricultural Sample Census was aimed at gathering data to ascertain the state of farming activities in the country which would assist government in policy formulation and planning.

“We have to know what they are doing and how are can improve on what they are doing.” He said.

The Director of Demography and Household Statistics in the National Bureau of Statistics Adeyemi Adeniran, remarked the census would be conducted in two phases, including the listing of agricultural stakeholders and a visit to their farms.

“We are going to take a sample of these households that are into farming and go to their farms, take relevant information concerning the owner of the farm as well as what is produced on that farmland.”

Meanwhile, the Director Corporate Planning and Statistical Coordinator Mr. Godwin Ameh, observed the exercise was last conducted about thirty years ago, noting the ongoing process started in Keffi Nassarawa State, with the sensitization of NBS personnel in the 19 northern states.

“This is a follow up on what happened in 1993, so that at the end of the day, the government would be aware of the latest as far as agricultural statistics is concerned.”

Delta State Commissioner for Economic Planning, Dr. Barry Gbe, represented at the event by Ighoro Alexander, lauded the initiative by the National Bureau of Statistics.

NBS officials from the South-West, South-South, and South-East, including representatives of farmers union in Delta State participated at the stakeholders’ sensitization workshop.

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